29 May 2022

Covid-19 update: Nine more deaths, 4841 community cases in NZ

1:17 pm on 29 May 2022

There have been nine more deaths of people with Covid-19, and 4841 more community cases of the virus detected, the Ministry of Health says.

Omicron variant. Covid-19. Coronavirus. Pandemic. Generic.

Photo: 123RF

The seven-day rolling average of community case numbers today is 6904, down from 7863 last Sunday.

In today's statement, the Health Ministry said there were 383 people in hospital, up from 362 yesterday, with four in ICU.

The nine new deaths today - which included four females and five males - brings the total number of deaths of people with Covid-19 in New Zealand to 1149.

Two of the new deaths reported today were people in their 60s, four were in their 70s, and three were in their 80s. One was from the Northland region, three were from the Auckland region, one was from Waikato, one was from Wairarapa, two were from Canterbury, and one was from South Canterbury.

Today's community cases were reported in the Northland (157), Auckland (1582), Waikato (342), Bay of Plenty (124), Lakes (80), Hawke's Bay (130), MidCentral (156), Whanganui (37), Taranaki (128), Tairāwhiti (25), Wairarapa (49), Capital and Coast (405), Hutt Valley (173), Nelson Marlborough (208), Canterbury (771), South Canterbury (105), Southern (300) and West Coast (67) DHBs.

There were also 43 cases identified at the border.

Yesterday there were 13 deaths reported of people with Covid-19, and 6369 new community cases.

There have now been 1,143,033 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand.

Earlier developments

California Governor Gavin Newsom has announced he has tested positive for Covid-19, following a meeting earlier in the day (US time) with Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern.

Associate Minister of Health Peeni Henare admitted Māori Covid-19 vaccination numbers have ground to a stand-still, but said he hopes the introduction of a further booster dose for some vulnerable groups will be useful.

Last week another round of booster vaccines against Covid-19 was announced. Details of who will be eligible have not yet been decided, and legislation to allow the further rounds was expected to come into effect in mid-June.

Global developments

In the US, use of Pfizer's antiviral treatment Paxlovid spiked this week, but doctors are reconsidering use of the drug for lower-risk patients.

A US public health agency said that symptoms can recur after people complete a course of the drug, and that they should then isolate a second time.

A significant step has been taken toward reshaping health emergency rules at the World Health Organisation.

Member countries on Saturday adopted a US-led reform of the rules for action on disease outbreaks, known as the International Health Regulations. The amendments have been called a once-in-a-generation chance for the international health agency to strengthen its role after the spread of Covid-19.

-RNZ/ Reuters

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